It has certainly started to feel like winter these past few days. Our combustion heating has remained alight non-stop for this last week, and as the days get shorter I find myself gravitating more and more towards the kitchen in order to make warming soups, breads and puddings.
This vegetable and lentil soup recipe is a variation of a recipe by Australian cooking extraordinare, Donna Hay - and it's delicious, of course!
Veg & Lentil Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 gloves garlic, crushed
1/4 cup fresh lemon thyme
1 carrot, grated
1 parsnip, grated
1 zucchini, grated
4oz dry red lentils
400g diced or crushed tin tomatoes
1L vegetable stock
Parmesan cheese to serve
1. Place oil, onion and garlic in a large saucepan and sautee until tender, then add lemon thyme and cook for a further 30 seconds to release the flavour.
2. Add carrot, parsnip and zucchini to pan and sautee for a further two minutes, then add lentils and stir through so they are completely covered in the oil.
3. Pour in crushed tomatoes and vegetable stock, then bring to the boil. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer. Place lid on pan and allow to cook for a further 30 minutes, or until vegetables and lentils are tender.
4. Allow to cool slightly and then blend either all or half of soup before reheating to serving temperature.
5. Serve topped with grated parmesan cheese and warm crusty bread.